WikiLeaks: Clinton Foundation Paid Women Less Than Men
Leaked email exposes Hillary's gender gap hypocrisy, pay disparity at family charity
The Clinton Foundation in 2011 employed more women than men but paid them less, on average, according to a salary schedule included in an email released Friday by WikiLeaks.
A foundation employee emailed the payroll schedule to board Chairman Bruce Lindsey and John Podesta, who currently chairs Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. It included then-Chief Operating Office and Chief of Staff Laura Graham's salary recommendations for 2012 for rank-and-file employees.
Overall, the average salary for women and men was close. But men out-earned women. Men earned $68,164 compared to $64,118 for women, on average. The median salary also was higher for men, $55,200 compared with $50,000.
The spreadsheet included 62 employees, 37 women and 25 men. It did not include people who received money from the foundation as contractors. The top-paid employee on the list was senior adviser Justin Cooper, who was pulling in $127,000. The lowest-paid employee was a female assistant making $18,000.
Clinton on the campaign trail regularly promises to close the gender pay gap.
"Last time I checked, there's no discount for being a woman," Clinton said in April.
Clinton's daughter, Chelsea Clinton, blasted Republican candidate Donald Trump in an interview with Glamour magazine over the summer for his failure to highlight equal pay on his website. And critics seized on a Boston Globe story indicating that Trump paid his male campaign workers more than female staffers.
But the Clinton Foundation's own gender inequities caused consternation in Clinton's campaign. WikiLeaks on Monday released an email from Democratic operative Ian Mandel on Feb. 24, 2015, referencing a story about pay inequity at the State Department and warning about salaries to top executives at the foundation based on the charity's publicly available tax filings.
"Guys — Given the story yesterday about pay equity at the State Department, I wanted to flag something that came out of our research on pay equity at the Foundation," he wrote. "There are huge discrepancies, and it wouldn't surprise me if they went here next."
Indeed, Trump seized on that story when it did hit the news, writing on his Instagram account in May this year that "#CrookedHillaryClinton says a lot of things that sounds great for #VOTE — but in reality, she does not mean it!"
Clinton also has come under fire for reports that female staffers earned less than their male counterparts during her time in the Senate, although the campaign has challenged the validity of that study's methodology.
The email released Friday by WikiLeaks shows that the pay disparity extended to rank-and-file employees at the foundation, not just the top executives.
It is difficult to determine if the foundation mistreated women, or if the pay gap is due to legitimate reasons. For instance, one high salary like Cooper's can pull up the male average significantly given the relatively small number of workers. Experience levels and tenure with the foundation also vary.
Even within the same department, different duties and levels of responsibility can explain why one employee earned more than another. For instance, Marc Dunkelman and Linda Jean-Louis both worked for the COO Department and both had been employed for the same amount of time. But Dunkelman, whose title was senior fellow, earned $41,400 more than Jean-Louis, who was finance manager of the Harlem office.
In short, there may be perfectly legitimate reasons why men made more than women at the foundation. But Hillary Clinton and her allies often ignore such nuances when they talk about businesses and trot out a misleading statistic showing that women make 77 cents for every dollar earned by men.
Claudia Goldin, a Harvard University economics professor who has studied the issue, told LifeZette that one-on-one discrimination does not drive the pay gap.
"They're not being paid less for the same work," she said.
Goldin said inequities likely exist. But she said men mostly earn more, on average, because they are willing or able to put in the time on the job necessary to rise to the upper echelons of companies.
"Men throughout history have been able to spend more time outside the home, outside the responsibilities of home — not just with respect to children but also [ailing] parents — than have women," she said. "Many of these decisions are consciously made by the two people in the home."
For what it's worth, five of the seven employees for whom Graham sought outsized raises were men. Overall, women received lower performance ratings than men, on average. And the recommended raise for men, as a percentage of their then-current income, was almost 1.8 times more than women.
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